High school football notebook: Brumbaugh shakes off slow start to set record

HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK

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South Fayette quarterback Brett Brumbaugh started slowly Friday against Seton-LaSalle, saying he made a number of incorrect reads on passing plays.

But by the end of the night, Brumbaugh could read his name in the WPIAL record book -- and it was correct.

Brumbaugh, a junior, had the best passing game in WPIAL history. He threw for a WPIAL-record 463 yards, completing 31 of 53 passes as South Fayette defeated Seton-LaSalle, 31-7, in the WPIAL Class AA quarterfinals.

South Fayette originally credited Brumbaugh with 372 yards passing. But South Fayette coach Joe Rossi said he and quarterbacks coach Shane Patterson reviewed film of the game and Brumbaugh's yardage total should have been 463.

Brumbaugh broke the WPIAL single-game record of 457 yards, set by Shenango's Rocco Colavecchia in 2006. Coincidentally, Colavecchia's statistics were almost identical to Brumbaugh's. Colavecchia completed 31 of 52 passes.

Brumbaugh had no idea he set a record until he read it on Twitter from a Post-Gazette reporter late Friday night.

"I didn't think much about it then, but looking back now, I guess it's pretty awesome," Brumbaugh said. "Looking back at it a couple years after I graduate, it will probably mean more. Right now, I'm just concerned about winning."

The score was tied, 7-7, at halftime.

"I just didn't make the right throws at the right times and didn't make the right reads," Brumbaugh said of the sluggish first half.

But Brumbaugh, as he often does, deflected credit for his big game.

"A lot of passes were short ones and the receivers would make 10- or 15-yard runs," Brumbaugh said. "This is definitely not all on me. I mean, our receivers and our line deserve a lot of credit, too. Without them, I couldn't do what I'm doing on the field."

Brumbaugh's record game also jumped him eight spots on the WPIAL career passing list. He went into the game 16th, but is now eighth with 5,958 yards.

Memorable parent story

Brumbaugh's record performance brings back memories of an unforgettable parent story that surrounded the old WPIAL record.

Colavecchia set the record against Mars in 2006. A few days before the game, Colavecchia's father, Frank, attended a Mars practice and told Mars coach Scott Heinauer that he was an assistant coach from Ohio University, scouting Mars quarterback D.J. Cannon.

Colavecchia then filmed some of Mars' defense practicing pass coverages. Colavecchia made a CD of the practice, gave it to his son and told him to give it to Shenango coach Brian Cooper. Cooper said he didn't watch the CD and threw it away.

Mars got wind of Frank Colavecchia's stunt and Shenango then barred him from attending the next two home games.

The game goes on

Two Sharon football players were killed and two others were injured in a car crash Friday night. Due to the deaths of seniors Corey Swartz and Evan Gill, the Sharon-Girard District 10 Class AA playoff game was moved from Saturday until tonight. Twins Craig and Greg Osmon also were injured.

Sharon coach Jim Wildman said the team voted to play the game. Sharon officials also said the parents of Swartz, Gill and the Osmons wanted the game to be played.

"No one's written a chapter on how to handle a situation like this," Wildman said to the Sharon Herald. "I don't claim to be a politician. But the school's administration, the board, the community, the booster club, the parents, the sense of support they've given has just been phenomenal. And the consensus among the coaches and players is, 'We owe them something, and this is our chance. ... The story's not finished.'"

Check this out

* University Prep quarterback Ron Brown finished the season with 3,401 passing yards, the second most in a season by a City League or WPIAL quarterback. South Fayette's Christian Brumbaugh, Brett's brother, threw for 3,726 in 2010.

* Thomas Jefferson's Chase Winovich rushed for 335 yards in the first eight games of the season. Winovich, a University of Michigan linebacker recruit, has rushed for 507 yards the past three games.

* Westinghouse's season ended Friday and it might be the Bulldogs' final game as a City League team. They have asked to join the WPIAL next year in football only. The WPIAL has not decided yet whether to accept Westinghouse.

For more on high school sports, go to "Varsity Blog" at www.post-gazette.com/varsityblog. Mike White: mwhite@post--gazette.com, 412-263-1975 and Twitter @mwhiteburgh


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